Thursday, 4 December 2014

2 December 2014: Trip to Slimbridge WWT Reserve, Gloucestershire.

Having spent a lot of recent trips looking at Short Eraed Owls, I decided that a trip to Dlimbridge was in order, especially given that it promised to be a very cold day - lots of hides and a good cafe make a cold a lot more bearable.
On the way to the South Lake hide, a group of Rook were foraging close to the footpath

From South Lake hide itself, I caught one Black Tailed Godwit having a flutter. It was really the wrong light for the majority of birds there, shooting into the sun, so I moved on.
Along the path to the Kingfisher hide I was escorted by a troop of Long Tailed Tits flitting overhead.
At the Kingfisher hide, there were no birds at all on the water and a few tits of various sorts visiting the feeders until this female Greater Spotted Woodpecker claimd the nut feeder.
It was proving to be quite a quiet morning, though I caught this Pied Wagtail flitting about on the edge of one of the exhibit pools.
Very little on show all the way down to the Holden Tower where it became apparent that the tide was well out. Out on the Dumbles, sat a Peregrine - according to others it had been there a while but hadn't been seen feeding.
On the pool in front of tye hide were some Dunlin
and a Mute Swan breezed casually by.
The flock of Barnacle Geese moved from the Dumbles onto the Tack Piece, providing a nice photo opportunity.

Back down at the pool I notioced there was both a Little Stint (left) and Dunlin(right). Nice to get them together in the same shot to help confirm identity.
A Redshank strolled by
and then all of a sudden the Golden Plover were all up - a huge flock. Unfortunately the light was not suited to showing off all of their splendour.
and then the Lapwing and Golden Plover settled again. The Peregrine hadn't moved and we didn't see what, if anything, had spooked them.

Next time, though, it was the Peregrine - up above the flock of LKapwing and Golden Plover
and then diving into the flock - on this occasion emerging without a kill.
From the Holden Toiwer, looking right, you could see into the Tack Piece, which was inundated with Wigeon
and about 20 or so Curlew
and a solitary Black Tailed Godwit
The Curlw were quite mobile in their foraging

Back on the Dumbles a Buzzard was escorted away by the Corvids.

Quite a few Bewick's Swans were feeding alongside the Greylags on the Tack Piece
and something, unseen by me, sent all the Wigeon dashing back to the safety of the water.
solitary Black Tailed Godwit
Bewick's Swans among the Lapwing
Time for another circuit of the reserve to warm up as much as anything else and calling in at the Willow Hide feeders produce som Blue Tit close ups.

From the Robbie Garnett hide overlooking the Tack Piece, I was fortunate enough to catch 2 of the Common Crane displaying to each other.

On then to the Rushy hide, where there were lots of Pintail
Bewick's Swans
and even more Pintail waiting to be snapped at fairly close range.

Back at South Lake one of the young cormorants flew in and then settled on one of the rails .

Still quiet at the southern end of the reserve so back to the Holden Tower, just in time to see the Peregrine off on another sortie, though we lost  it from sight this time.

Greylag geese started to move from the Dumbles to the Tack Piece

and a group of what appeared to be White fronted Geese dropped in front of the hide. Closer examintation showed we had 3 White Fronted Geese and a Pink Footed Goose - a first for me.

Pink Footed Goose

two more White Fronted Geese flew by.
Just as it was getting time to leave and the light was deteriorating, 6 Common Crane showed on the Tack Piece
and then 3 of them took to calling loudly to see us off.
aA parting shot as I passed the Rushy Hide as these two Greylag flew in for the evening Swan feed.

No comments:

Post a Comment